I heard once that it says somewhere in Chazal that there were certain things or people that HaShem "regretted" (had "charatah") in creating. Although I don't remember which examples were given or if a source was give. Does anyone know of such a statement in Chazal (or perhaps not just one but a few if there are?)


Sukkah 52b:

ארבעה מתחרט עליהן הקדוש ברוך הוא שבראם ואלו הם: גלות, כשדים, וישמעאלים ויצר הרע - There are four that the Holy One, Blessed is He, regrets having created. And these are they: The exile, the Chaldeans, the Ishmaelites, and the evil inclination.


any time you find such language about God it is not meant to be taken literally.

the reason is that God knows ahead of time what will happen, so the whole concept of regret does not apply to Him.

  • 2
    this would make a constructive comment, but it doesn't really answer the question, which asks for a statement, not the explanation of Gd's 'regret' – Baby Seal Jan 23 '14 at 8:35

It is the word "nawkham". To regret, repent or "to console".

It is being used in following verses in the Written Torah

Bereshit 6:6 . and Jehovah repenteth that He hath made man in the earth, and He grieveth Himself--unto His heart.

Bereshit 6:7 And Jehovah saith, 'I wipe away man whom I have prepared from off the face of the ground, from man unto beast, unto creeping thing, and unto fowl of the heavens, for I have repented that I have made them.'

Shemot 32:12 why do the Egyptians speak, saying, For evil He brought them out to slay them among mountains, and to consume them from off the face of the ground? turn back from the heat of Thine anger, and repent of the evil against Thy people.

Shemot 32:14 and Jehovah repenteth of the evil which He hath spoken of doing to His people.

Bemidbar 23:19 God is not a man--and lieth, And a son of man--and repenteth! Hath He said--and doth He not do it? And spoken--and doth He not confirm it?

Dvarim 32:36 For Jehovah doth judge His people, And for His servants doth repent Himself. For He seeth--the going away of power, And none is restrained and left.

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